week ending 22 January 2010
Feed-in Tariff Pressure Continues
With an announcement confirming Feed-in-Tariffs expected next month, renewable energy firms are keeping the pressure on the Department of Energy and Climate Change to give equal treatment to pioneers of microrenewables.
New Energy Focus 22nd Jan 2010 more >>
A number of green features have been put forward, including toilets that use rainwater, lighting that reduces electricity use by piping in sunlight and a woodchip boiler to generate renewable energy.
Bristol Evening Post 22nd Jan 2010 more >>
Clacks School Turbine
ECO warriors at Menstrie primary school have earned themselves a second green flag from inspectors. The whole school put in a tremendous effort to improve upon their already excellent environmental credentials to scoop the second award through activities such as litter picking and putting a wind turbine on the premise.
Wee County News 22nd Jan 2010 more >>
Community organisations in Wales are to benefit from a £15m investment in green energy technology. The funding is expected to create up to 22 jobs and will finance schemes utilising such sources as wind and hydro power. Communities will be able to generate their own electricity to use or sell to the National Grid. A total of £8m assembly government cash will be backed by more than £7m from the EU regional development fund. It i hoped such help will enable communities across Wales to reduce carbon emissions and help tackle climate change. The Community Scale Renewable Energy Generation project will provide between £100,000 and £300,000 to each eligible project.
BBC 21st Jan 2010 more >>
New Energy Focus 21st Jan 2010 more >>
A COMMUNITY group in The Meadows has started a national eco-challenge this week. The Meadows Partnership Trust is one of 14 groups across the UK to have been selected as part of the British Gas Green Streets energy challenge. The programme will see £2m invested to find Britain’s most innovative “green community”.
Nottingham Evening Post 21st Jan 2010 more >>
SCOTLAND’S hyrdro-electric potential is almost double what was previously thought according to a Scottish Government report. The study states there could be 1.2 gigawatts of potential new hydro capacity in more than 7,000 schemes across Scotland.
Scotsman 21st January 2010 more >>
The Scottish Government has published a policy statement outlining its support for hydro projects in the wake of a new study which claimed that the country’s potential hydro capacity has almost doubled from 2008 estimates. The report, which was compiled for the government by energy site assessors Nick Forrest Associates, estimated that there could be 1.2GW of new hydro capacity in 7,043 schemes, compared with 657MW outlined in the earlier report - which was carried out by the Forum for Renewable Energy Development in Scotland.
New Energy Focus 21st Jan 2009 more >>
AD - Slow Progress
Poor availability of funding has been the main barrier to progress being made with anaerobic digestion plants over the last year, according to trade bodies and industry experts. Steve Lee is chair of the AD Task Group - established by Defra last year to take forward ex-Labour recycling minister Jane Kennedy’s plans for anaerobic digestion. It launched a draft Implementation Plan in July 2009 identifying areas, including infrastructure, technology and regulation, for action to help make the technology established in the UK by 2020. Mr Lee said he was expecting Defra to publish an approved AD Implementation Plan at the end of February which will highlight areas for action.
New Energy Focus 21st Jan 2010 more >>
To put SMEs at the forefront of the move to a low-carbon economy, the FSB is calling for action to: streamline the planning system to allow the UK to embrace low carbon technologies and, in particular, make it easier for SMEs to install micro-energy production; leverage private capital – use public funds to maximise private finance via mechanisms such as business incubators and public-private hybrid funds; use public procurement to drive demand for low carbon products and ensure sustainability is at the heart of Government procurement decisions; and create a dedicated small business department within the Energy Savings Trust, to give tailor- made advice to SMEs on how to go green.
Western Mail 20th Jan 2010 more >>
Where there’s biomass boilers there’s brass
The Forestry Commission England has published figures showing that Yorkshire and the Humber has 290 of the 1,960 biomass heat boilers it identified in a survey of England’s boilers, making the region top in the country for installations.
New Energy Focus 20th Jan 2010 more >>
Swanley Technology College, in St Mary’s Road, Swanley, is the first school in Kent to receive a wind turbine funded by The Co-operative’s £2million Green Energy for Schools programme.
Dartford & Swanley Times 20th Jan 2010 more >>
Eco Build 2010
Visitors to Ecobuild 2010 will have the chance to get their hands on the latest renewable technologies at a new attraction - Practical Installer - brought to you in association with the Plumb Center. It will put the latest innovations in renewables under the spotlight dispelling the myth that renewable technologies are complicated and showing that, in some cases, they are more straightforward than traditional technologies. With live and interactive sessions throughout the day, including the latest solar panels being installed on a demonstration roof and experts on hand to show how easy it is to do all the associated pipe work and plumbing, visitors will be shown that renewable really is do-able.
Click Press 20th Jan 2010 more >>
The government’s chief scientific advisor, Professor John Beddington, has today predicted that the failure to deliver a binding international agreement at last month’s Copenhagen Summit will force governments and businesses to take a more “bottom-up” approach to tackling carbon emissions. Speaking at a roundtable hosted by the Energy Technologies Institute (ETI), Beddington admitted that the Copenhagen Summit had proved a “disappointment”, but argued that national and state-level climate change policies would continue to drive investment in low carbon technologies.
Business Green 20th Jan 2010 more >>
Roof-mounted wind turbines and solar panels are “eco-bling” that allow their owners to flaunt their green credentials but contribute very little towards meeting Britain’s carbon reduction targets, according to the Royal Academy of Engineering.
Times 20th Jan 2010 more >>
Daily Mail 20th Jan 2010 more >>
UK targets for cutting carbon emissions by 2050 will not be met without radical changes to the engineering of buildings, a report says. One of the study’s authors criticised the government’s “woeful track record on setting ill-considered targets”. The Royal Academy of Engineering report lays out a groundwork for reducing the environmental impact of new buildings as well as refurbishment of old ones.
BBC 20th Jan 2010 more >>
Small wind turbines, such as those attached to buildings, will not help the UK meet targets to cut home and office carbon emissions, engineers have warned. A Royal Academy of Engineering (RAE) report, written by Professor Doug King, said far greater cuts could be achieved in new buildings and in “retrofitting” old buildings by focusing on bringing energy use down through efficiency measures.
New Civil Engineer 20th Jan 2010 more >>
British Gas Competition
British Gas has launched a new challenge that will see 14 locations across the UK use energy-saving initiatives to boost their efficiency. A range of microgeneration measures have been planned, with an outdoor lido in Suffolk, a cafe in Nottingham and a school in Oxfordshire among those planning on using solar technology. Some £2 million worth of measures have been provided by British Gas to help the communities cut their current consumption, while enhancing the generation of their own energy. The location that witnesses the greatest improvement will be d the winner of British Gas Green Street challenge and receive £100,000 to be spent on a local environment project.
Rapid 20th Jan 2010 more >>
Permitted Development & Noise
Energy minister David Kidney has dismissed claims that the permitted night-time noise limit for onshore wind turbines is too high. Mr Kidney was responding to a Parliamentary question tabled earlier this month by Bernard Jenkin, Conservative MP for North Essex, who demanded to know for what reasons the government endorsed the maximum permitted levels, which are currently set at 43 decibels.
New Energy Focus 19th Jan 2010 more >>
MOSELEY householders will be ramping up their green credentials, thanks to the efforts of a local environmental group. Volunteer group, SusMo has won the regional finals of the West Midlands Region British Gas ‘Green Streets’ competition with plans to create energy and save energy in 20 homes, a church, school, mosque and allotments, in Moseley. Experts from British Gas and other energy companies were so impressed by the proposals, they will spend around £200,000 on executing the plans, subject to planning and viability studies.
Birmingham Mail 19th Jan 2010 more >>
Heat Pump Bonanza
Two non-profit organisations have joined forces to turn parts of the UK into renewable energy microgeneration hot spots. Community Energy Solutions (CES) and Renewables East, are celebrating the successful completion of a tender process for suppliers of air-to-water heat pumps. Both parties aim to bring affordable and environmentally-friendly warmth into up to 2,500 existing homes which do not have access to gas.
Driffield Times 19th Jan 2010 more >>
More Ambition Required
The government should increase its target for small-scale renewable energy, claims one environmental group. Friends of the Earth (FOE) published an open letter in yesterday’s Guardian newspaper arguing that the current target of generating two percent of renewable energy from microgeneration by 2020 is inadequate. Andy Atkins, executive director of the FOE, said the government needs to set feed-in-tariffs (FiTs) much higher to encourage householders and businesses to enter microgeneration schemes.
Low Carbon Generation 19th Jan 2010 more >>
A community hydro electric scheme, to generate power from a Monmouthshire dam, goes to council planners later. The Tintern Angiddy Project aims to generate electricity from up to 200 litres (44 gal) of water per second through an underground pipe, alongside the River Angiddy above Tintern.
BBC 19th Jan 2010 more >>
Inherent Energy has won the contract to supply and install solar PV modules to the workshop, which is to be built as part of the council’s Seaham North Dock project and will produce units to be rented out to businesses with a marina-related focus.
New Energy Focus 18th Jan 2010 more >>
Energy regulator Ofgem has asked for views on its proposed strategy for the next five years, including delivering more low carbon energy. Starting this year it proposed to work on designing programmes such as the Renewable Heat Incentive, the Renewables Obligation and Feed-in Tariffs, “to deliver Government targets at a cost that is fair to current and future consumers.”
New Energy Focus 18th Jan 2010 more >>
Nottingham’s Merton Rule
NEW houses in greater Nottingham will have to meet at least 20% of their energy needs from renewable sources, under proposals. Councils have agreed plans to force developers to make sure one fifth of the energy used in new buildings is green in 2010-11. They will be expected to increase the amount of green energy used to 23.5% in 2012-13 and to 27% between 2013 and 2016. From 2016, the Government will require 100% of the energy needed by new developments to be from renewable sources.
Nottingham Evening Post 18th Jan 2010 more >>
LEW – Light Emitting Wallpaper
Even low energy light bulbs could be redundant in a matter of years. Newly invented ‘light emitting wallpaper’ could start to replace light bulbs in 2012. The Carbon Trust has given financial backing to help develop organic LED (OLED)lighting technology that could result in major carbon cuts.
Green Building 18th Jan 2010 more >>
A mobile anaerobic digestion rig will be tested on a range of industrial effluents at a variety of food and drink manufacturing premises in Britain over the next few months. The mobile Clearfleau rig will first be moved to the site of an unnamed Somerset cheese maker for trials on whey during January and February before moving on to another site.
Food Manufacture 18th Jan 2010 more >>
Heat Pump for EST Trailer
The Energy Saving Trust advice centre East of England has recently commissioned an interactive energy saving exhibition trailer. The new Energy Saving Trust interactive trailer contains several examples of the latest energy efficient technologies that help demonstrate new ways to save energy, reduce costs and reduce CO2 emissions, including a working solar panel and wind turbine. Daikin UK have provided a fully operational air source heat pump, the Daikin Altherma Split system. The system was installed by Rothwell Plumbing Services.
Plumbing Park 18th Jan 2010 more >>
The Scottish Government has published a consultation on extending permitted development rights for domestic micro-wind turbines and air-source heat pumps to encourage greater take-up of the renewable technologies. The PD proposals only concern existing houses and “very specific limits” are set on the location of the equipment, including that the technology should be at least 100 metres away from neighbouring residential property boundaries. Bearing this in mind, the consultation document asks whether PD for domestic microgeneration equipment should be further constrained in areas designated for their landscape or recreational value.
New Energy Focus 18th Jan 2010 more >>
One key policy area is a move to make it easier for homeowners and businesses to install microgeneration systems. Microgeneration is defined as the generation of less than 50kW of electricity or heat using renewable sources such as wood, energy crops, solar, wind and geothermal resources. Experience tells us that local planning authorities are generally supportive of such schemes. Indeed, the potential lifting of the red tape which surrounds planning applications will help to promote small-scale renewable energy development.
Yorkshire Post 18th Jan 2010 more >>
The Greens’ top priority is to persuade the SNP to accept the case for a free, universal insulation scheme as a way of tackling fuel poverty and climate change rather than the means-tested grant scheme in selected areas which was introduced instead.
Scotsman 18th Jan 2010 more >>
A wave of green building will be taking place in Hartlepool after the town secured £1.8 million of government funding. The money will be used to build tens of new council homes, with Hartlepool Borough Council having also pledged funding for the projects, the Hartlepool Mail reported.
Energy Saving Trust 18th Jan 2010 more >>
Farm waste could be used to help power houses in a Lincolnshire village if a new energy plant receives the go-ahead. A large barn on farmland in Nocton Fen, south of Lincoln, currently used to store equipment, will be transformed into part of an anaerobic digestion facility under the proposal submitted to Lincolnshire County Council. Edinburgh-based renewable energy company Greenspan Energy wants to develop a plant capable of using 28,000 tonnes of organic material each year to generate heat and electricity.
Lincolnshire Echo 18th Jan 2010 more >>
Letter from several people including John Sauven and Andy Atkins: Local, decentralised renewable electricity generation has advantages beyond cutting carbon emissions. Businesses generating their own clean electricity will reduce their energy bills, increase their competitiveness and reduce their vulnerability to future fossil energy price rises. Communities can gain an income and a stake in the creation of a low-carbon economy, and households, social and private landlords and local authorities can cut energy bills and tackle fuel poverty. It will also generate many jobs. Setting higher feed-in tariffs for small-scale renewable generators could treble the amount of renewable electricity generation by 2020 compared with the proposed scheme. This additional generating capacity is the equivalent of the output of Drax coal power station or two-and-a-half times the output of Sizewell B nuclear plant.
Guardian 18th Jan 2010 more >>
Low Carbon Economy 19th Jan 2010 more >>
A car-free island, a solar-heated swimming pool and a BMX club that generates its own electricity are competing to be named Britain’s greenest community. They are among finalists in the British Gas Green Streets challenge. The winner, who has to prove how they have cut energy use and slashed carbon emissions, will receive a £100,000 prize to fund future green action.
Daily Mirror 18th Jan 2010 more >>
Fourteen British communities will go head-to-head, competing to become Britain’s most innovative “green community”, as British Gas kicks off its Green Streets community energy challenge today.
Centrica 18th Jan 2010 more >>
Better Generation 19th Jan 2010 more >>
Low Carbon Economy 19th Jan 2010 more >>
A group of two-wheeled enthusiasts in Bradford is one of a handful of organisations to trial energy-saving, micro-generation schemes for British Gas. The firm’s Green Streets project has awarded funding to the Bradford BMX Bandits club for the installation of advanced, energy-saving technology to power floodlights at its track in Peel Park.
Telegraph & Argus 18th Jan 2010 more >>
Rapid 19th Jan 2010 more >>
The Scottish island of Islay is pioneering a system that uses whisky to create green energy. Bruichladdich Distillery is to build an anaerobic digester to convert thousands of tons of yeasty waste into methane gas, which will be burned to make electricity.
Sunday Times 17th Jan 2010 more >>
Made from girders no more
Irn-Bru, the iconic fizzy drink imbibed by generations of Scots, will now be manufactured by soft Atlantic breezes. Owners AG Barr are turning production of the orange-coloured drink green by harnessing the power of the prevailing westerly winds. The company has just received planning permission to erect a £2.5 million turbine to provide most of the electricity from wind power at its Cumbernauld factory.
Scotsman 17th Jan 2010 more >>
Pans for a second multi-million pound green energy farm near Wigton will go on public display next week. A group of farmers want to build an anaerobic digester on the Kirkbride Industrial Estate to produce renewable energy for 1,000 homes. Community Renewable Energy (CoRE) North West is behind this and a similar scheme at Middle Farm, Silloth. It wants to create a network of green energy farms in west Cumbria and has already made a planning application for Middle Farm, which will be considered by councillors on January 26.
Carlisle News and Star 16th Jan 2010 more >>
A tiny island community met yesterday to discuss how to spend a £130,000 windfall so they spend less on fuel bills, and had none other than Energy Minister Jim Mather present to help in their deliberations. Mr Mather was on the Argyll island of Easdale as the community discussed the cash they won from the Scottish Gas Green Streets initiative.
Press & Journal 16th Jan 2010 more >>
Scottish Permitted Development
The Climate Change (Scotland) Act 2009 requires Scottish Ministers to consult on proposals to extend permitted development (PD) rights to micro wind turbines (MWT) and air source heat pump (ASHP) installation on domestic buildings. This consultation fulfils that undertaking as required by section 70 of the Act. Comments on the consultation are sought by 1st February, 2010.
Scottish Government 15th Jan 2010 more >>
DORSET farmer is working on a green solution to the problem posed by disposing of tonnes of chicken manure. The 50,000 hens at Farrington Fresh Limited produce around six tonnes of droppings every day, and Mark Mogridge thinks there’s a better way to get rid of the smelly by-product than spreading it on fields. Mr Mogridge, who runs the egg production unit at Deer Farm in Farrington near Sturminster Newton, is hoping to install a £1 million anaerobic digester to convert the methane from chicken waste into electricity.
Stour and Avon Magazine 15th Jan 2010 more >>
Where there’s Low Carbon there’s brass.
A REGIONAL centre aiming to put Yorkshire at the heart of a global revolution in green industry was launched in Westminster last night by leading environmental experts and politicians from across the region. Top academics from Leeds, Sheffield, York and Hull universities have joined forces with regional development agency Yorkshire Forward to create a pioneering climate change research centre designed to develop the new technologies and research projects needed for a low carbon economy.
Yorkshire Post 15th Jan 2010 more >>
Shortly, the Government says it will publish a ‘Household Energy Management Strategy’ setting out strategies to reduce household emissions by nearly a third on 2008 levels by 2020. The coming months will also see more details of the Government’s ‘clean energy cash-back’ scheme or feed-in tariff for microgeneration and new policies aimed at reducing emissions in small businesses. The Government also highlighted its plans to introduce incentives of £2000-5000 for purchasers of ultralow carbon vehicles next year.
Energy Efficiency News 15th Jan 2010 more >>
Eigg, a small Scottish island, has won a £300,000 green energy prize after constructing a renewable electricity grid and successfully cutting carbon emissions by a third over a year. This feat was made all the more remarkable when it is considered that the island, south of Skye, has a population of just 95. Yet the residents were able to install a combined wind, solar and hydro-powered electricity supply to help them become almost entirely self-sufficient in regards to electricity.
Rapid 14th Jan 2010 more >>
A lighting system developed by a Yorkshire company could one day replace traditional sodium street lights across the UK. Carbon Reduction Technology (CRT) claims its LED lighting system dubbed ‘e-lamp’ uses up to 75 per cent less electricity than traditional sodium street lights and is much more efficient than other LED lights on the market.
The Engineer 11th Jan 2010 more >>
Prince Charles is reported to be considering having solar panels installed on to the roof of his London property Clarence House in a bid to improve his energy efficiency through the renewable energy technology.
Northern Gas Heating 4th Jan 2010 more >>
Utilities and micro-CHP
Utilities will be critical drivers of early micro-CHP market growth in Europe. Delta’s new Utilities and Micro-CHP report explores the level to which they are just dipping their toes in the micro-CHP water, or throwing themselves in head-first. A few are actually diving into the deep end - for example, in the UK, Centrica and E.ON UK are the only European utilities publicly placing forward orders for tens of thousands of micro-CHP products, with Centrica having an equity stake in fuel cell developer Ceres Power.
Delta Decentralised Energy Outlook January 2010 more >>